Many crazy ideas are floating in the winds of this country, noxious seeds destined for the ears of sympathetic legislators.
And given the divided state of our nation right now, there’s a decent chance that even the most cringe-worthy could make the leap.
Below, I’ve highlighted a handful of those stinkers, in this case dreamed up by abortion opponents, and bolstered by the recent Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 decision that legalized abortion nationwide.
Among the most odious of these ideas is what proponents call “long-arm jurisdiction,” which suggests not only prosecuting abortion providers in the state with fines and jail time, but also women who travel interstate to get legal abortions and anyone. who provides these women with support or services, including transportation.
The National Committee for the Right to Life posted a model law on its website that would extend penalties beyond illegal abortion to “aiding or abetting illegal abortion” and prosecuting people. who provide “instructions by telephone, Internet or any other means. Communication.”
Texas law now allows any resident of that state to spy on anyone they suspect of plotting to obtain an abortion in a state where the process is legal to report it and collect a $10,000 bounty.
Not so long ago, such anti-democratic and anti-American measures would have had no chance of becoming law.
But as we all know, the political landscape has recently changed. In the ascendant are now the mouth-to-mouth fanatics of God, and the people at all levels of state and federal government whom the fanatics hold in the thrall of sympathy or by the sheer muscle of their votes.
More worryingly, they have the ear of the Supreme Court.
In such an environment, anything can happen.
Chelsey Youman, Texas State Director and National Legislative Counsel for Human Coalition Action, an anti-abortion organization that aims to enforce new laws nationwide, recently spoke about the connection between vigilantes and the right to ‘abortion.
Instead of the state regulating abortion providers, she said, “You and I, as citizens of Texas or this country or wherever we can pass this bill, can instead sue the abortion provider. abortion… We have legislation ready to roll out for every state you live in to protect life, whatever the Supreme Court, whatever your circuit court.
The ultimate irony is that the very people who so consistently insist on states’ rights are suddenly eager to apply their laws to other states that don’t share their view. Did I forget something? Didn’t they ask that each state be able to make its own laws?
This should concern every thinking American.
It is worth taking a moment to reflect on the Pandora’s box that such a bill would open up.
Imagine two adjacent states, State A, where the purchase and consumption of marijuana is legal, and State B, where it is not. One day, a resident of State B crosses state lines into State A to buy weed and smokes it there. When he returns to his own state, someone smells a puff of weed on him, reports it, and receives a reward for it.
The next day, the police show up at his door to take him to jail.
“Yes sir, you’re right, marijuana is legal there and illegal here. But see, there’s a new law that allows us to arrest you for traveling to another state and buying cannabis and having it. smoked there,” says the arresting officer. “Hands behind your back.”
A State Patrolman in State B learns that a roadside camera recorded a State B resident speeding 50 mph on a road in State A, where similarly graded pavement actually sets the limit to 50 mph not State B’s 40 mph.
“I know, sir, it’s 50 miles an hour there, but it’s 40 here. License and registration, please.
A possible future is emerging here. And the question we all need to ask ourselves at this critical time is: what kind of nation do we want ourselves and our children to live in?
As for me, I want nothing to do with the one who now lights up the eyes of fanatics.
Robert Whale can be contacted at [email protected]